Viral Prescription

Introduction for Practitioners

The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta estimates that one third of the 150 million yearly outpatient prescriptions for antibiotics are unnecessary and are responsible for the emergence and spread of drug-resistant bacteria. The New York State Department of Health joined with the health care community in 2000 to form the New York State Upper Respiratory Infection Project Committee, which has developed a Viral Prescription. The purpose of the Viral Prescription is to provide the practitioner with a tool to simplify and expedite the correct management of viral upper respiratory infections. This Prescription allows you to rapidly and consistently educate patients about their viral infection, an infection that requires proper management but not an antibiotic.

Within the Viral Prescription, we offer general instructions for managing the symptoms of a viral upper respiratory illness, possible over-the-counter medications that may be helpful, and a section for follow-up monitoring.

The Upper Respiratory Infection Committee seeks your help in addressing this important public and personal health issue. Use the Viral Prescription in your practice. Please feel free to reproduce copies of the Viral Prescription.